Sharing and building Solution Focused practice in organisations


SF Coaching

This is a group to discuss all aspects of SF coaching. Please share your questions, comments, insights and any interesting cases.

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Latest Activity: Jul 13

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"Miracle" Questions 8 Replies

Started by Craig Kennedy. Last reply by Tarık Gandur Jul 11, 2012.

Kegan's Immunity to Change. Has anyone read it?

Started by Phillip Ziegler Dec 27, 2009.

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Comment by Phillip Ziegler on December 16, 2009 at 18:24
Mark Mc--Great question. I have asked. My friend--who brought me on board--and who hired all the other psychodynamic coaches--knew my therapy work and always sent couples to me because he thought no one he knew was as effective with couples. So he respects my work--but not the ideas that influence my work. But we are talking and its been a very stimulating set of conversations. But I don't think, in the end, he will become an SFT coach any more than that I will become a psychodynamic one. So we are going to build the team with a range of folks doing different things and we will see what the feedback is from the coaches and the different locals.
Comment by Mark McKergow on December 16, 2009 at 17:41
Phil, I wonder why they asked YOU to design the training etc, rather than one of the other coaches?... What did they see in YOU that told them you would do a great job? Might even be worth asking about! :-)
Comment by Mark Mitchell on December 16, 2009 at 16:57
hmmm.......I don;t Phil your cortex is pretty evolved it might be difficult finding such people.:)
Comment by Phillip Ziegler on December 16, 2009 at 16:55
Mark-- I have a great idea. Hire coaches who work and think like I do. Any suggestions Mark?
Comment by Mark Mitchell on December 16, 2009 at 16:43
Phil, Just the usual, give the coaches compliments on their work and what might be helpful and develop a sales piece.:)
Comment by Phillip Ziegler on December 16, 2009 at 15:11
I've mentioned to some on this list that I retired from the practice of therapy about three years ago--my orientation was SFT for the last 10 years or so--wife and I wrote Recreating Partnership: A collaborative, solution-oriented approach to couples therapy (Norton, 2001.) I've been drawn out of retirement to join a team of consultants and coaches to be a coach for leaders of a large labor union--and now being asked to recruit, train and supervise the coaches and to design a training program in coaching for the union leaders themselves. There are many challenges but the main one as I see it presently is that the current coaching team is made up on the one hand of traditional problem oriented executive coaches/OD people and on the other psychodynamic psychotherapists. I am bringing my solution focused orientation into my coaching but don't really see how I can, or whether its even worth trying, to influence the people on the team to look at coaching in a solution focused way. When it comes to designing the training for the union leaders I suspect I will encounter lots of resistance from the other coaches who will want the training to favor their approach. Any thoughts? Suggestions? Reminders?
Comment by John Bonnett on May 11, 2009 at 16:49
Thanks for bringing your several meaningful insights to my attention. I shall study them in greater detail and apply them to some of my cases. I am certain many will increase my efficiency and effectiveness as I work with a variety of client issues (problems?). Thanks again.
Comment by Hans-Peter Korn on May 11, 2009 at 8:54
To focus on "problems" as issues to be solved or on things which should fit or work better is a very useful view which not in contradiction to SF.

For me "focusing on solutions - and not seeing the problem" is one of the misunderstandings of SF: SF does NOT mean to ignore or neglect the problem. SF of course brings (and has to bring) the problem on the table very clear - but in way, which makes it possible for the client to articulate the problem himself and not to be told what his problem is (unless the client does not want / seems to be not able to see something harmful for him or for the society). And SF for me brings the problem on the table in a way which shows different views on that problem as a platform to "liquefy" the problem using SF as a "solvent".
In my personal opinion phrases like "problems are problems because we call them problems" are (maybe) useful as provoking starting points for deeper reflections in trainings - but they are not useful as a condensed description of "SF in a nutshell". Such phrases IMHO are misleading trivialisations of SF.
So, for me it is a misuse of SF to skip e.g. as a social worker with a family all harmful events. In such a situation for me SF means, that the social worker clearly addresses such harms and maltreatments of the parrents against their child as unacceptable. And after that NOT to find causes for such events but to find positive exceptions in the past when living together was posible without harming and maltreatment.

So, what is described recently in is not a disprove of SF but a misuse of SF in way, that addressing harms and maltreatments have been avoided.

In the SOLUTIONS-List this was discussed in the last days in the thread "SOL and Baby P" and "Problem solving for the solution focused". And Ivan Webb from Tasmania provided this "process skeleton" which they used at a large Tasmanian primary school to solve problems by adopting the solution focused approach - and they enjoyed the rewards:

1. Value the problem as an opportunity to learn and to improve the school(achieve greater success and well-being for all)
2. Contain the problem as quickly as possible - minimising its disruption and demonstrating our commitment to success and well-being for all
3. Resolve the problem - that is, take steps to restore the parties' success and well-being
4. Understand how the problem arose - gain insights into what's working, what's not and what else might be possible
5. Reduce the likelihood of similar problems recurring (develop counter measures but only if necessary!!)
6. Make changes (to the school systems) that will reduce the likelihood of the problem recurring
7. Improve the school systems beyond the problem

I like especially this 4th step:
> 4. Understand how the problem arose - gain insights into what's working,
> what's not and what else might be possible

It is in a nice way paradox: "To understand how the problem arose" usually is understood to dig out the roots of the problem and the roots of the roots... And in this step instead of it a very different strategy is offered: "gain insights into what's working, what's not and what else might be possible".
Comment by John Bonnett on May 11, 2009 at 0:01
My early training (years ago at the Harvard Business School) caused me to focus on problems and isues to be solved. The better we became at soving problems the higher our pay, or so we thought. My solution to problems associated with grain hedging as a member of the Chicago Board of Trade seemed like a breakthrough in the 70s, but in retrospect, and in view of what I've observed at this site thus far, my success might have come quicker and easier by observing a solution approach. I look forward to learning from the great depth and diversity represented in this group. I look forward to interacting with many of you and I will welcome your ideas and suggestions since I have much to learn in this areas which is new to me.
Comment by Kevin Clouthier on April 23, 2009 at 13:24
Hello everyone,

I have taken a few minutes to explore the members of this group & it is striking to see the bredth of scopes of practice and experiences of members. By trainng, I am a Marriage & Family Therapist and have practiced SF therapy with individuals, couples and families since the mid-1980s. I am curious about the distinction between therapy and coaching. In particular, when the focus of the work is, like Christina Toma, the development of Welless, Work/Life Balance and Personal Development. I welcome comments that can assist me to better understand this disinction. I look forward to other discussions regarding coaching practices.

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